Impressions of The Yellow Mountain

The Yellow Mountain(黄山)is one of the most capricious places that I have ever been to. The range of its moods and possible expressions is extremely wide and unpredictable—it might be anything from stormy terror to the utmost serenity. Weather forecasts? I personally witnessed one of the most beautiful sunrises when meteorologists predicted 99.9% probability of overcast skies for that very morning. And during my three days in the mountain, I experienced rain, snow and bright sun—autumn, winter and spring, all compressed into fleeting three days.

The place is very delicate yet not too humble—it requests showing your respect to it. If you do so by putting in an effort and being very patient and attentive, though, it rewards you with some of the most beautiful and subtle moments you can possibly imagine.

I am not entirely sure about the cause–and–effect relationship, but this temperament can probably be explained by the mountain's status in China. As the Chinese say, “五岳归来不看山,黄山归来不看岳”, which can roughly be interpreted as "Once one has been to the Five Sacred Mountains, he does not need to see any other mountains; once one has been to The Yellow Mountain, he does not need to see the Five Sacred Mountains".

"Strange" is the keyword describing the mountain—it is famous for strange peaks (奇峰; there are 72 peaks that are higher than 1000 meters), strange stones (奇石; too many a stone resemble people, animals, etc.), strange pines (奇松; as they say, “无石不松,无松不奇”, which roughly means "There is no stone without a pine, and there is no pine that is not strange") and strange clouds (奇云; on the average, two hundred days in a year are cloudy or foggy or both; clouds and fog often form clouds seas).

Being in the mountain somehow prompted Miles Davis' album "Bitches Brew" to play in my head—clearly and loudly, almost overpowering my train of thought. I gave in and, even though I had all my music with me on the iPod, continuously listened to the record while in the mountains and later while working on the images taken there. The place and the music felt like a perfect match, one depicting the other, one calling for the other; afterwards, The Yellow Mountain Gallery was initially titled "Bitches Brew @ The Yellow Mountain". Associations are very personal and powerful creatures, and the two have remained inseparable in my mind to this day.

Bitches Brew @ The Yellow Mountain

Bitches Brew @ The Yellow Mountain